The Republic of Korea Air Force
(ROK Air Force
: 대한민국 공군, Hanja
: 大韓民國 空軍, Revised Romanization
: Daehanminguk Gong-gun) is the air force
of South Korea
. It operates under the Ministry of National Defense.
The ROKAF has about 500 combat aircraft
of American design, plus a few Russian, European, and indigenously designed aircraft.
Shortly after the end of World War II
, the Korean Air Construction Association was founded on August 10, 1946 to publicize the importance of air power. Despite the then-scanty status of Korean armed forces, the first air unit was formed on May 5, 1948 under the direction of Dong Wi-bu, the forerunner to the modern Korean Ministry of National Defence
. On September 13, 1949, the United States
contributed 10 L-4 Grasshopper
observation aircraft to the Korean air unit. An Army Air Academy was founded on January, 1949, and the ROKAF was officially founded on October, 1949.
The outbreak of the Korean War and the 1950s
The 1950s were a critical time for the ROKAF as it expanded tremendously during the Korean War
. At the outbreak of the war, the ROKAF consisted of 1,800 personnel but was equipped with only 20 trainer and liaison aircraft, including 10 T-6 Texan
: 建國機, Geongukgi) advanced trainers purchased from Canada
. The North Korean air force
had acquired a considerable number of Yak-9
fighters from the Soviet Union
, dwarfing the ROKAF in terms... Read More